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Of the 4.78 billion people online today, 3.8 billion are active social media users who regularly log onto numerous platforms to post, like, comment, consume, sell, talk shit, creep, and more via algorithmic data infrastructures colloquially known as feeds. Feeds have become a dominant form of communication, completely reshaping our digital commons.

Feeds are purported to connect us to one another; they spark friendships, romances, and revolutions, and they keep them alive. On the other hand, feeds are explicitly designed to increase engagement. Not only do feeds capture our attention, they turn it into a product, ultimately generating advertising revenue for third parties. Epitomizing the fleeting moment and eluding nuanced, in-depth discussion, the same algorithms that serve to unite people with similar interests and ideologies also amplify differences, demonstrating an ability to not only connect us, but to drive us apart.

Continually-optimizing algorithms make it impossible to step into the same feed twice. Whether they function as windows into the world, as mirrors pointed at ourselves, or as something altogether more insidious, feeds wield a powerful influence over individuals, global communities and systems; they have impacted everything from how we shop to how we tell jokes to how we protest injustice to how we vote. The eighteenth issue of CLOG examines the design, behavior, and impact of feeds — and the myriad ways in which we interact with them — during this increasingly entropic time.

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Matthew Allen, AJ Artemel, Hannah Berger, Camille Bianchi, Matthew Alan Brubaker, Natan Diacon-Furtado, Ben Duvall, Ziv G. Epstein, Ellena Erskine, Weston Finfer, Max Graenitz, Malena Grigoli, Cassandra Hradil, Marilia Kaisar, Dana Kelly, Andreas Kofler, Gautam Palav, Beatriz Pinta, Curtis Roth, Jack Rusk, Ronny Salerno, Danny Wills, Gian Maria Socci, Rebecca van Beeck, Lucia Tahan, Rachel Serfling, Ryan Skrabalak, Paul Soulellis, Benjamin Strak, Ushma Thakrar, Mike Tully, Emily Weltman


Digital Book Available:
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105 Pages
32 Contributors

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